Monday, 20 December 2010

How many words for snow?

Too damn many, according to Icelanders. And too much snow according to me. Lovely and pretty though it is I wish it would stop.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

16 days post NaNo

I written a new short with the working title of Ceil. It is, of course, not what I should be doing. I should be thinking about Hellion. And I do, and am, but it requires so much umph that I'm not going to start the re-write until after Crimble, and possibly not until 2011 ...

... which is a frightening thought. Another year has shot by. Though as a positive I can say I've 'won' NaNo and that we've recorded an album. Now all I need to do is finish the novel and sell them both .

I don't suppose a managerial type is reading this blog?

On more mundane fronts: B and I have just finished tidying the house for an inspection by the agent. You'd think that provided you pay the rent and don't give them gyp they'd leave you alone. But no! Personally, I think it's a damn nerve and piss poor public relations. Ah well, one day .... ;)

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Firefox 4 Beta

I've just installed the Beta for Firefox 4 - though I'm very late to the party as it's already version 7. Sadly, my most used plugin - download em all - isn't available yet. Otherwise it's way peachy and shiny ... and shiny is just what Emus love.

Now, as it's 3.45ish I bed bound.


Sunday, 5 December 2010

Pondering, yet again

It's sunday morning and I'm about to head off to kip. I spent yesterday thinking about characters, situations, locations and drama ... and how I can simplify what I've got and split the core story into two or, gawd forbid, three.

Logically I must be closer to knowing what to do, but it doesn't seem like it! ;)

Friday, 3 December 2010

Smashwords - definitely worth a look.

Humph :(

Having read what I've written during NaNo 2010 I've decided two things. The first is that it's actually, in places, quite good. And the second is that it's far, far too complicated, with too many major characters. I'm working with story arcs that should span more than one, and possibly more than two books. So either I cut, tweak, fix and write a lot more - or I slice it into three. This isn't a bad thing. In fact it's rather a nice problem to have.

So that's where I am on the morning of the third post-NaNo day.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Day 30 - Oh yes!

At just before 03:00 I hit the tit and was lauded as a winner. I won with 50,309, though that's not close to where Hellion will be, wordage wise, when it is finally finished. There's so much still to do.

On the one hand I feel smug and warm and wuzzly and am ready for kip. On the other I'm sort of upset that the November NaNoWriMo extravaganza is close to over - and not just because the rent is due on the 17th.

What I must not do is put Hellion away with a view to finishing it 'soon'. That's a disaster in the making. What I have to do is rip apart what I've written. Then write the outline, character outlines, Location descriptions, story arcs and sub plots that I should have written in October. Then I have to finish the rest of the first draft. Only then can I take a break, before starting the second draft.

The great thing about NaNoWriMo 2010 was the camaraderie with Bruin. Wonderful it was! :)

Monday, 29 November 2010

Day 29

I'm at 47,367, on the penultimate day, and I'm feeling quite relaxed - even though I have to go out to rehearse and then drive M home.

What I don't need to happen - and it would be a good example of sod's law if it did - is to get this close to finishing and then miss the bleedin' deadline. Oh no. No way siree.

When I get to the BIG 50 I'm going to read what I've written, complete a real outline and character and location sheets, and then carry on writing. I think I have three interwoven story arcs - which are not interwoven in the right places, and a plethora of sub-plots that need pruning.

100k is my present guestimate for the finished novel.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Day 27

Yes, it's Saturday, day 27 and you get no points for guessing I'm behind. I need to write 4,000 today and I won't do it if I'm yabbering away, blogging.

So I'll sod off and write, then. Catch you later.


Thursday, 25 November 2010

Day 25

Whoops, it seems I've missed out a couple of days. Never mind.
I'm now behind again, which is not peachy at all. 38,741 is not 41,667 - though by the end of play today I think I'll be there.

Load of people have already finished their 50k, and many are well on their way to 100k, which is proper noveling ;)

Now, no more waffling. I've got to get on ... things to do people to see novels to write. :)

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Day 22 - part II

Just past target and the best days writing to date. I'm really getting into the story now, which is what NaNo is truly all about. I think (fingers crossed) I should have a first draft of around 70,000 words.

Ave all.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Day 22 - part I

I'm writing this at the beginning of day 22. Or close: it's 03.20. I've just caught up and past day 21's 35,000 mark and am off to the sack at 35,596.

I'm really getting into the story, but typically, I have so many threads and sub-plots going on I really do need a proper working outline. And something a tad better than Page4 to work on. Maybe Scrivener will end up being the tool of choice?

what I definitely need to do once I've got to the end is read it -- printing is the only way to go -- and start the first re-write before I put it to one side, as I've done with the other three NaNoWriMo novels I've written.

I very much want to hold 'Hellion' as in 'an actual book' and record it for Podcasting, too. Also, have it as a digital download. :)

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Day 18

Things are getting exciting in Hellion ... though I can't say what, other than Talek has returned to the Imperium.

Too many words to complete tonight, so catch up is going to roll over again ... bah!

Day 17

Day 17 was a Wednesday (if you're interested).

I came soooooo close to catching up. Then didn't. Oh well, what I did do was write a chapter precis for where I am to date. AND it's very useful. :) Seriously, I wouldn't be where I'n not without it.

Night night y'all ;)

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Day 16

I nearly caught up and then watched TV instead. So now I have to catch up again. Ah well. C'est la vie and all that (wimp). I saw a great doc on 'The Heroes Tale' as it relates to Star Wars. Well worth seeing if you get a chance.

I'm past half way (25,731 as I write) and have to get to 28,334 by tomorrow night - or tonight, seeing as it's already 00:30.

Nighty night.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Day 15

I caught up after midnight which actually means I'm still behind. Humph.
Never mind. The most important thing is that I'm well into what I'm writing, and though some bits are crap, that's what the edit is for! Wicked. ;)

Night night all (03:15)

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Day 14

I watched a great end to the F1 season, and though Mark Webber, my choice for Champion, didn't win, at least Alsonso was denied the title thanks to a pole to flag race by Sebastian Vetel - who is now the youngest ever F1 champion.

Then I had to go into Rye and spend a few hours helping a friend put stuff on eBay ... and then eventually she decided not to. :(

Saw Thorne Scaredycat on TV with food, and now I'm even further behind. Sigh. But I will do this thing. After all I want to write. I want to do this, and there's nobody with an Damoclesian sword held over my head ... is there? ;)

By end of play tomorrow it's the half way point: 25,000 words. I'm not going to worry about the quality of the work - as everyone says, that's for the edit. Words will be spilling out of my finger tips tomorrow. Oh yes they will!

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Day 13 pt II

After watching a very exciting F1 qualifying - which didn't produce the result I wanted, but nonetheless produced a very exciting grid for tomorrows race - I am now writing.

Almost too much to do to catch up ... but catch up I shall, and more. See? It's good to be certain of one's intent. I shall not be lacklustre and left by the wayside. :)

Day 13 - Saturday (F1 qualifying for last race of 2010)

At least it's not a Friday and I'm not one of the Knights Templar. Thank heavens for small mercies.

Now to bed, and then, in a few short and dreamy hours I shall arise, watch a smidgeon of TV - F1 W00T! m'lud. And then tippy-type until I am all caught up. If I do not manage to do this thing today then I shall rise and repeat for Sunday. However I shall be all caught up by the end of the weekend. Hmm, let me just check my calculator. So (gulp) by the end of today I must be at 21,671 and I'm presently at 16,075 which leaves me (gnash, wail) 5,596 to do. Or tomorrow it's 23,338 - 16,075 which leaves 7,263 (Waaaaaaaaa).

I don't like this game. I don't think I liked it the last time I partook (2008) either. Why do we do these things to ourselves? Why?

Night night, sleep tight, hope the bed bugs don't thingy.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Day 12

Much like day 11 with a bloody rotten rehearsal thrown in for good measure. My mate Bruin (Sinbad) is flying ahead, as is Ieshwar. I wish them both all the best, and long may they crow ... until I catch up again!

And catch up I will. See if I don't!

Ave, mes amies.

Oh, and do remember: The final round of the 2010 World Championship is on sunday with qualifying tommorow! Go Webber ... and if it isn't Webber, then Go Hamilton!


Day 11

Lucky old day 11 I say! It was also slated as an official non event.

Yep, nothing happened, no writing was attempted and thus no wordage was achieved. Parp and pronk.

In other news: Sinbad continued to rock the Casbah!

And so, well past sundown*, day 11 ended.

* "so far past sundown that in actuality 'twas the next day." Said the old Emu, re-counting her grandson's life story to her avidly listening clutch of eggs.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Day 10

I'm claiming Day 10 as an official non event. Nothing happened, no writing was attempted and thus no wordage was achieved. Poop.

On the other hand, Sinbad positively rocked the Casbah!

Thus endeth day 10.

Day 9

Getting to 15,000 wasn't easy. In fact it was a bit of a pig. I'm not sure - at the moment - where the hell Hellion is going, but after reading the NaNoWriMo gee-up email they sent today, I don't think it matters.
It is just fine, even good, I'd say, if at this point you have no idea what the point of your book is. You are exploring now; you are trying to find the book.
I guess Aimee Bender is saying much as they say in the music business: 'fix it in the mix.' Or, in the film business: 'make it work in the edit.'

She then goes on to say:
You are learning what comes out of you if you take your work seriously like this for a month.
Yeah, I know this! It's why I'm doing it. However ... I still wish I'd got up off my fucking arse and written a proper, peachy, all things sorted outline! Phew, now I've got that off my chest I'll sod off to bed.

'scuse the bad language.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Day 8 - pt 2

I got there with four minutes to spare and the site was overloaded. Which means I really should get a life and not worry about word counts. Truly they are meaningless -- he said, weeping as he failed to officially make target. And then he looked and all was well!

By the skinniest of margins indeed. It was updated at 23:59

And Hellion? Oh, it's a novel with words. Lots of good, and some woody, words. I'll try and dig out a good bit to post tomorrow.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Day 8 - pt 1

It's lashing down with rain, the garden is too soggy to walk in - not that one would want to - and the light levels are low enough to send a hampster into instant hibernation. [sigh] And so I shall struggle ever onward toward tonight's 13336. [wibble]

All I want to do is get under the duvet. Odd, really. If I still had blankets the idea of heading to bed wouldn't appeal at all. But now we've taken the Scandanavian idea of bedding to heart it seems ... comforting. A sage people. That coping with miniscule daylight hours should have brought forth such a wondrous bit of bedding is rather miraculous.

Argh. Look at all those words I've typed. and not one can I use for my Novel. [idiot]

Ave, and lang mey yer lum reek :)

Day 7

Yep, today was the penultimate Grand Prix in Sao Paulo, Brasil. Damn good it was too! Vetel won, Webber came second and Alonso third. Which means, for those who care, that the drivers world championship goes down to the wire in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E.. Jenson Button is out and the four who can mathematically win it are Alonso, Webber, Vetel and Hamilton, though Hamilton would need a miracle.

And! I managed to get to 11,796 words ... some jolly good words, too.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Day 6

Skin of the teath job, that was. I made it by 7 words ... then the NaNo site was over-capacity. Finally I got the word count in with just seconds to spare.

Not that the word count is important. ;)

Now, and for the first time in what seems an age, I'm off to bed. Early.

Goodnight. :)

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Day 5, Day 6, F1!

Day 5 went okay. I've managed to keep up and slightly over each day's word count - 1667 per day to keep on track. Now it's day 6!

Sinbad is doing very well, too. I say this not just because of his wordage, but because I've been lucky enough to have read part of his novel ... and I'm much looking forward to the next instalment, too (hint ;)).

It's saturday (day 6), and qualifying for the pennultimate FI Grand Prix at Interlagos in Brasil is this afternoon. W00T! I'm rooting for Mark Webber, an Australian who is, most people think, being royally fucked over by his team in preference of his younger teammate Sebastian Vettel. Much as I love the sport I think it's a shame that, yet again, it's all down to age. Webber is 34, and, as far as F1 goes, considered close to 'over the hill.' Vettel is 23 and the new golden boy. Michael Schumacher who is seven times world champion, and whose comeback has been truly (not Jarno ;)) awful, is 41.

F1 is a bit like ... well, I suppose all sports. Most armchair aficionados think they could do as well. Now, I know I couldn't really beat Vettel. Much like I couldn't win at worldclass tennnis, snooker, darts or morris dancing (shudder - Morris dancing, the one pastime you can happily keep). But I like to think that, given the chance, I could.

What isn't ageist is NaNoWriMo. Indeed, NaNoWriMo is a thing we can all do (he says confidently, on day 6). So onwards and upwards!

Friday, 5 November 2010

Day 4

I made it, just. But then it's not down to wordage - really. It's down to 'is there a damn point.' so, at 6683, just 15 words over target I updated my count, frothed over the keyboard and sent the whole lot to print. Naturally I am so, so sorry for the paper use, but it will be re-cycled. Oh, what a maker I am.

So now, after watching 'Lie To Me' (recorded), I'm going to have a read. And tomorrow I shall either be continuing as is ... or not. The 'or not' is slightly worrying as it means a major re-think of plot. Still, such is life.

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Day 3

I'm knocking off at 5,777 and going to veg out and watch 'Lie to Me.' I might come back and write some more before I shuffle off to bed, but sleep beckons.

As to content I'm pleased. I'm on chapter 4. Not that it's going entirely where I want it to - I'm not sure it is. It's actually going where it wants to go and I think I'm a sort of guide. This writing process is most peculiar. I honestly wonder if I do have some sort of muse that takes over and guides my tipetty typetty fingers. Perhaps an investigator into the paranormal might like to have a go with me. And no, that's not some sort of perverted sexual offer - just in case Blogger is reading this.

Umm, unless, of course, the investigator is cute ... and wealthy! Harmony vocals and bass playing would be good, too. And a Ferrari. Oh, and a studio in a big house in the country (if I'm going to dream I might as well dream). ;)


Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Day 2

I ended on 4282, but that was a nadge into day 3. I can't seem to stop just before midnight, and why on earth should I? Anyway, I've written a rather hot scene. Or should that be hawt? Whichever. It's quite, erm, rude. Rude in a nice hot-under-the-collar, re-arraging of the trouser department, sort of way. Strangely - or not so strangely if you know me - I've resorted to pantsing. And yet it works (don't fix that that ain't broke).

The outline is being followed. Ish. A bit. But then it's not the most explanatory of outlines, and how was I to know they'd want to have sex on a train? No, not in public! Gawd forbid.

Did you know that there are only two night sleeper trains left in the U.K.? One goes from London to Scotland, and the other from Paddington to Penzance. If you can afford a ticket then this is probably being read and précised by one of your PAs. ;)

Night night.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

The first day.

Peachy: that was the first day. I finally managed 2,133 words which leaves me in good stead for the morrow ... or today if you're being pedantic.

A few mates decided to try their hand, too. Bartello (a renowned keyboard player), Kapitano (a renowned sage and songwriter), and KittyJ (a very dear friend from over the pond). I'd like to wish them well, and may they have hale and hearty word counts! ;)

I've finally worked out a working method. I'm using the stalwart 'Page four' to write and make notes; Firefox to grab stuff and images, and Office Picture Manager to look at them. Scrivener was great, but as it was a first beta I found it a little too buggy. I would have kept the whole shebang in yWriter 5 had I created all the characters, places, etc before the first. But as all I need to do is write, then Page Four is great. I've spent far too much time waffling on about writing software and not nearly enough time planning. Sadly, entirely my bad. Still in the long run it's not going to be a problem. Fiction is fiction no matter what it's written on.

The NaNoWriMo site is being really slow. Not surprising. I guess they didn't expect 148,892 authors to sign up! And, they say that generally it's only 2/3 of the final head count that sign up on the first day, which would bring the total of new novels (providing everyone finished, which is unlikely) to well over 200,000. The mind boggles!

Sinbad (Bruin Fisher) mentioned a NaNoWriMo piece on the BBC's 'Today' programme, this morning. I listened to it on the iPlayer and heard Ian Rankin and Fredrick Forsyth being interviewed (the last ten minutes of the show). They both said that NaNoWriMo was a good thing, and that provided you did all your research, world and character creation before hand, that there was no reason you couldn't write a novel in 30 days. Rankin then said he wrote the first 'Rebus' novel in 30 days, and Forsyth said it took him 35 days to write 'The Day Of The Jackal.'

Now I'm going to write a little more, then turn in a hit the sack.


Monday, 1 November 2010

Yaaarrrr (in a piratical voice)

Chuffed. Three odd hours into day one and I'm at 1,136. :)
So now to bed.

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Waaaaaaaaa ....

Yep, the pre-off nerves are setting in now. What excuses can I come up with that'll make a withdrawal seem honourable? Why the fuck did I spout off to everyone and their dog/cat that I was going to take part? why am I such an arse?

"But that's all part of it," my £100 a week internet sensei says (I should be so lucky). "Relax and you will achieve all your little heart desires."
"What? 50,000 words?"
"Well, yes my child. But to be really sure, another little donation would help."

Nope, I'm here all by myself. Me and my netbook: bonded together for a whole month with windows 7 (which had better not fuck up). I'm truly and honestly looking forward to it. Truly ... honestly. I have a few friends taking part, too. And we'll be righteous! word, man, word! :)

Now. Back to it.

Friday, 29 October 2010


Synopsis: Hellion

Far from the hustle and bustle of London, way to the west of the madding crowd lies Hellion, a Cornish village that has almost magically remained apart from the modern world. The Hellion Arms has been run by Moon's for generations. Now, though seldom seen, Talek Moon is the landlord and the pub run by Kenver, his son.

A strained meeting with the family solicitor and a wax sealed envelope
gifts Digory Olver with news he has inherited his great aunt’s
cottage in Hellion, a place he can barely remember from his childhood.

Excited at his windfall, Digory sets off for Cornwall. But
the nearer he gets to Hellion the stranger he begins to feel.

Thursday, 28 October 2010


I know I said I was definitely going to use Scrivener, but now I'm not so sure. Not because it isn't good: it is, but because I have all my pre-planned (chortle) snippets in Page Four. Then there's Q10 which is a wonderfully good but basic text only programme, and Writer's Cafe, and ... and ... [wail].

Honestly, I'm at the stage I really don't care what I write in. And I know exactly why I'm frothing at the mouth over software choice. I'm setting myself up with excuses for not writing 50,000 words. I'm setting myself up to fail. OUCH! Know thyself. And that's as honest as I'm ever going to be in a public blog.

what I have done is made a little notebook for NaNo 2010. Proud as punch I am, too. I found a site that belongs to Hamish MacDonald, a Canadian writer who lives in Scotland. He calls himself an Author and Indie Publisher, and he not only writes novels, but physically produces them himself! Literally! So I followed his instructions and made a small A6 hardback notebook. For notes, yes. Which will, indubitably, help me with the thing I shall be penning.

In other news, yesterday we played as a real band and it was FANTASTIC! For the first time we had a drummer, a bassist, and no backing tracks at all. Admittedly, it was a nadge rough, but the soul was there in spades. Shivers down the spine and all.

So, tum-te-tum, the choices are:
1) a collection of short stories with a central theme ie- the snug in a pub where stories are told during a drunken afternoon's revelry.
2) A pick up from 'Worth' the 24,000 words I wrote in 2008. A new novel that will be merged with the original post NaNo.
3) raison d'ĂȘtre - Parallel trading, drug smuggling, and revenge!
4) Tiatrather - Way smith finds out there are other places as real as earth, saves the elven queens life and ends up in love.
5) Sol - a couple of alien spirits arrive on earth and inhabit and help a pair of runaways.
6) slice of Life -
7) Probisher -

And not a lot of time left to decide!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

6 days and counting.

I've just installed Scrivener for windows and it's peachy. Peachy in that I'm going to use it for NaNo as I can't faff around any longer thinking about software. After all, novels don't come from software, and Muse is getting upset.

Story ideas? Nope, and yes. Fragments are squeezing their way out of the thing I call a brain/mind/gray matter ... but no cohesive whole just yet. Though I have no doubt whatever it turns out to be it will involve elves. ;)

Sunday, 24 October 2010

8 days to go ....

Just eight days to go until the off and I still have no firm idea as to what I'm going to write. A collection of short stories seems to be the easiest, but that isn't what I want. I want to complete a real long form story, not wuss out with shorts.

Whatever I end up writing I'm going record and podcast. That, at least, I've decided. Also, I think it'll be with Scrivener, too, as it looks like the best of all the software I've tried.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

NaNoWriMo 2010

I've just signed up for 2010 after deciding I definitely wouldn't. This leads me to wonder if NaNo might be quantifiably addictive. 'Probably' has to be the answer.

Anyway, this year I shall pre-plan (yeah, right).

Saturday, 11 September 2010


I'm girding my loins and starting to think about this year's NaNoWriMo. 2009 was almost a total washout. I say almost 'cause I managed 25,000-ish words and got the beginnings of a good novel out of it. That said, yet again I didn't finish what I'd started. Infact I've now added it to the other two unfinished novels I have lurking about on hard drives ... which is, I'll admit, a poor show.

Nevermind! It's all words under the bridge. This year I'm going to crack the apathy.